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Wacky Ark. Animal Deaths Continue: 100,000 Fish Go Belly Up

"Obviously don't' eat the dead fish."

First birds, now fish.

After thousands of birds fell from the sky in Arkansas over the weekend, now hundreds of thousands of fish have turned up dead just 100 miles away.

The Drum fish turned up over a 20-mile stretch of the Arkansas river in Northwest Arkansas.

KTHV reports:

Keith Stephens with Game and Fish explains, "We got a call last week from a tug boat operator that found the fish out on the river along the bank, in the river channel and we immediately dispatched somebody to the area to take a look."

Investigators from local and state agencies took samples from the affected area. Stephens says fish kills occur every year, but the magnitude of this one is unusual, and disease could be the cause.

A pollutant would have affected cross species. Stephens says, "Ninety-nine percent of them were Drum, which is a bottom feeder. It's not a game fish in Arkansas."

Some fish collected were alive and visibly sick. They have been taken to the University of Arkansas at Pine Bluff for testing.

The affected area was never closed and fishing is encouraged. "Right now it's fine to fish. If you go out there you can still fish for bass and crappie, catfish, it will be fine. Obviously don't' eat the dead fish."

For now, the Game and Fish department isn't planning a massive clean up: "We'll have raccoon and birds and things like that will take care of it so there is really no clean up, it's really too big. It's contained along the river channel."

One last thing…
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